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Observer, Thinker, Censor

By Karmayogi

For any yogic experience of value, the first possession is Silence. Vishnu Lele asked Sri Aurobindo to sit down, close his eyes and see thoughts entering the mind from outside. Lele asked him to throw out the thoughts. It is a yogic method of seeking Silence. To chant OM1 crores of times is another method. Silence is of several levels. There are running thoughts in the mind. They have no relevance to us.

Those thoughts are of random nature. They stop during meditation. If they do not stop, no meditation will set in. In the minds of undeveloped people there will be no such thoughts. They are the blessed souls untormented by unwanted thoughts. Mind acquires a clarity when random thoughts cease. At this stage, what is known as the mental observer can be seen. It just observes, does not think. During a deep meditation, the observer falls silent. It is a valuable moment.

Clarity of mind is greater when the observer too is silent. One can think now clearly. To take two or more facts and relate them in the mind is the process of thinking. There is a Silence appropriate to each level, when the random thoughts stop, the observer falls quiet, when thinking ceases. It is in grades. The richness of Silence grows as we proceed. Not to speak is a discipline of Silence, mouna vrta. It is not to express the thoughts that arise. Mouna is a state when no thought arises in the mind. Even after that, there will be someone in the mind passing comments constantly. Sri Aurobindo calls it the ‘censor'.

Perhaps when the Silence behind the Silence is attained, the censor will fall quiet. When Sri Aurobindo was talking to Richard, the husband of Mother, He gave both of them Silence, a boon one gets from several lives of tapas. It remained with Mother to the end. Richard shouted that he was becoming an idiot. It left him. The exalted yogic state of Silence is to the European mind a state of stupidity. Silence is the basis of any yogic realisation. For those who desire to invoke the Spirit, Silence is a great help. Silence can also be cultivated, as any other faculty can. His figure in the Mind brings in a cascade of Silence.

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